Widen your book’s distribution Part 2 Goodreads

Ok, so Goodreads isn’t a publishing platform but it’s a huge marketing one, and as I can’t start uploading my books onto other platforms until my KU runs out in a week’s time, I decided to do something about my dormant Goodreads account.
Here is what I learned:
1. Applying to be an author is simple. Go here to get started. Within a day or so I had a welcome email –

Hey, you’re a Goodreads Author now!
Your application has been approved, and you now have access to your author dashboard, which provides you with all the tools you need to manage your presence on Goodreads.
To get started, visit your author dashboard, or choose from the following topics:
Fix your Book Listings
Get the right books showing on your author profile with the right covers
Promote Your Books
Find new readers with giveaways and advertising
Interact with Readers
Learn how to communicate with your readers and avoid common mistakes

So I went straight to the author dashboard because that was the first link, right? Now one of the things you need to know is that not everything happens on the dashboard. But it IS where you add your books. There’s an ‘add a book’ button, which takes you to a simple form.

Hint: Have your Amazon page open because you need to do a lot of cut and pasting, including the description – why write a new one? Mostly straightforward but the problems I had were

1. the ISBN/ASIN wasn’t accepted a couple of times. However, you can upload without that, so I did exactly that (I suspect it was to do with problem 2.)
2. Because I realised I hadn’t uploaded the cover image after I’d uploaded the book – that box is sneakily off to the upper right where I didn’t think to look once I got to the bottom of the form – I managed somehow to open the form again, did the cover and then re-uploaded. Big WHOOPS – I now had two versions, one with a cover and one without.
This took me a lot longer to figure out how to fix and I have to say the Goodreads help page on this was, to me, less than helpful. However, a couple of phrases stuck in my meagre brain
– author profile
– combine these editions

It appears that in order to edit your book uploads you have to

1. go to Edit my author profile (top right)
2. scroll down past the blurb about yourself to get to a list of your uploaded books. At the top of this list, in tiny type are the magic words: Combine editions
And this button not only lets you, simply, ensure you have one only link on your page for each book BUT also – who would know?? – allows you to edit the listing. Like, upload the photo you forgot, or change the description. (Which one of the combined editions you do this to to take effect I still haven’t worked out, so I did it to all of them. Like to be thorough.)

Learnings:
1. Make sure you fill in all the boxes first time around
2. Either rely on the Amazon link to let your readers find the kindle version or audio, ie upload the paperback only OR do them all separately and then combine them as different versions of the same book. There’s very likely a more professional way to go about this but this worked
3. Know that Edit your author profile is the magic place to make things happen.

The good news is that someone was actually reading one of the books as I was doing all this, so that’s encouraging!

Here’s my Goodreads author page if you want to check it out. Don’t tell me if anything’s wrong and don’t ask me to write a blog.

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